Hepex 2015 Year in Review

Contributed by: Hepex co-chairs

In the year 2015, the Hepex Portal published over 50 posts from a number of different contributors. As the year draws to a close, we selected a collection of highlights for you.

Hot topics in 2015?

Definitely, seasonal forecasting has received special attention in Hepex during 2015. Besides post contributions, including the challenge of forecasting summer time in Switzerland (in its traditional and more technical way), the successful seasonal forecasting workshop organized at SMHI in Norrköping (Sweden) has greatly contributed to bringing together the community and advancing knowledge.

Hepex-posts-2015More is expected in 2016, including a seasonal hydrological forecasting experiment to foster research and applications of monthly to seasonal forecasts, and a special issue in HESS for the publication of novel developments and recent progresses. Keep connected to the Hepex Blog for further information.

A lot of in-depth thought has also been devoted this year to the human forecaster and its role in operational activities. We discussed the challenges in real-time forecasting, the statistician we all (may) have inside of us, the uncertainty in decision-making, and the human expertise (vs. automation). We also posted on why (or why not) a model run is not a forecast, on what makes a good hydrologist today, or if an observation should, finally, not be considered as a model too.

Several posts have covered specific challenges in hydrological modelling (diversity, parameterization, its essential nature in forecasting) and forecasting techniques (data assimilation, pre- and/or post-processing). Contributions on the role of the social sciences in forecasting and the challenges of decision-making were also present. These topics offer key opportunities in Hepex today, and we hope more contributors working on these issues will exchange their developments and views with the community in 2016.

Have you met new people and visited new places?

Once more, Hepex posts made us travel around the word: to California, China, Africa, the Caspian Sea, Austria, Myanmar/Burma and Bangladesh.

Our co-organized meetings and topic-related conferences were opportunities to meet and exchange knowledge in Vienna, Prague, Sweden, Australia, Brazil, and, recently, San Francisco. In 2016, we will continue taking you to exciting places, such as to Quebec (Canada) for our general workshop in June.

Young researchers were also present this year, through our “Introducing…” series and posts about their research interests. We hope it will be even more the case in 2016.


Hydrological forecasting @ EGU 2015

And much more to read, learn and play

A big ‘thank you’ goes to our Hepex guest columnists in 2015, who took their time to share their views and opinions with us.

We also had some webinar speakers and video sharing this year. Visit our webinar YouTube channel and check the webinar given by Ida Westerberg on discharge uncertainty, or the webinar on statistical post-processing techniques and ensemble forecasts given by Tilmann Gneiting, University of Heidelberg, which is a very comprehensive talk for both beginners and experienced experts.

And if you are looking for material to help you teaching, Anders Persson made available his 5-day course on probability, which he gave in Bologna, Italy in February. Games for training and teaching are also available in our Resources page.

Finally, if you have missed the post of Dr McFools published this year, you can catch up here (or wait for the next one on April 1st, 2016, certainly!).

We hope you have enjoyed the Hepex Portal in 2015. We invite you all to contribute with your own blog posts (tips can be found here) and to support the organization of Hepex activities in 2016.

Happy holidays and a joyful New Year!


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